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Santa Barbara in a Bottle: Brander Sauvignon Blanc

March 15, 2011

The weather is finally starting to heat up in New England (a whopping 40 degrees today!) and the sun is beginning to show its shining face, for a few hours a day at least. This winter seems to have lasted forever and brought with it more piled up snow than I’ve seen since one epic winter as a child growing up here.

I went to college  for four years in a land far, far away (Southern California, east of L.A.) and although I’m glad to be back east with family and friends, I sure do miss the SoCal sun.  Always shining, always warm. Even in winter.  And after this winter, I really just want some of that warm sun over here. . .

Cheesy as it may sound, with one sip of Brander Vineyards’ 2009 Sauvignon Blanc the fantastic dream of soaking up some SoCal sun becomes a reality for me.

Brander Vineyard is located in the Santa Ynez Valley in Santa Barbara County, a mere 2 ½ hours from Los Angeles. They have specialized in Sauvignon Blanc since 1977, making 2009 their 33rd vintage!  The Brander Vineyard 2009 Sauvignon Blanc was one of Andover Liquors’ Top Ten Wines of 2010, and for good reason.

The vineyard describes their wine as  “crisp and dry, with floral aromas and true varietal expression.”  On the nose, this light-bodied blend of 100% Sauvignon Blanc offers up aromas of key lime and ripe & fleshy pear and papaya fruits.  The mid-palate is fresh, citrusy and slightly grassy with firm yet gentle acidity. The mouth feel is smooth with refreshing flavors of grapefruit and lemon-lime backed by mild spice and subtle vanilla that linger with the long and lightly saline finish.

It is a truly delightful, zesty, fresh and fragrant wine for only $17.99.  For this reason the 2009 Brander Sauvignon Blanc has been awarded many accolades, including a rating of 89 points from both Wine Enthusiast and Wine Spectator (not to mention a spot among Andover Liquors’ Top Ten Wines of 2010!).

During my tenure in California I spent about a week in Santa Barbara, or SB as they call it.  Drinking this Sauvignon Blanc is just about as refreshing as spending time in Santa Barbara was for me.  Though it’s a relatively big city, SB manages to keep a moderately laid-back pace and a small town, tight-knit community vibe about it.  The people there tend to be conscious about their impact on the planet and their role in the global society.

Me sipping on a "Buffalo's Milk" in the SoCal sun... I hadn't found Brander yet!!

Perhaps as a result of this movement in the area, the Brander Vineyard has begun to embrace the principals of Biodynamic farming, a holistic methodology of grape growing/wine making.  For Brander, “the crux of Biodynamic Farming is to respect and encourage a natural balance of plants, insects, animals, and micro-organisms while employing an organic farming method.”  The result is thoughtfully produced wine made in balance with the earth, that is also well-balanced in and of itself.

As I sit here all bundled up, waiting for the rest of the snow to melt (fingers crossed), I really feel that I am soaking up some SoCal sun as I sip this wine made from grapes grown under that same hot sun.  After all, as Galileo put it, “wine is sunlight, held together by water.”  Who am I to argue with Galileo?

It pays to get involved…comment on our blog for a chance to win an Andover Liquors Gift Certificate! In order to be considered in our contest, the “rules” are simple. Pick a post, leave us your thoughts and sign your first and last name. It’s that easy…and you could win a $50 gift card, too!

One Comment leave one →
  1. Linda permalink
    March 15, 2011 9:42 pm

    I agree that it’s a wonderful wine — and, your post makes me want to visit Santa Barbara!

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